On Tuesday I spent much of the day listening to and processing Mel Chua's presentations of her research in the educational psychology of hackers, and how it applies to Hacker School, and thinking about how it applies to my experiences. I wrote a more extensive post about that on my blog. I was also very fortunate in being able to talk with her at length about my own life and learning, and she gave me helpful feedback, and introduced me to some techniques of self-awareness that can guide self-improvement. I am bursting with admiration for Mel, who is extraordinarily articulate, perceptive, full of joy, and who has thrived in the face of incredible adversity. I am so glad I've had the opportunity to meet her.
As for my work, I did make some moderate progress on implementing the new design of Protagonist. It's slow going, and I noticed that I felt irritated by that. I reflected on the irritation, and realised I was overtired still from the weekend. So I took a 20 minute nap, as I am wont to do.
When I returned, I was still feeling lowered motivation about Protagonist, so I decided to figure out what the next step would be for writing LDA. I ended up looking at the original paper. I didn't finish it, in part because reading it made me excited, and reminded me of previous computational linguistics ideas that I've been gestating, as well as spawning new ones. I like that feeling of focus and excitement, even if it wasn't associated with direct progress on a goal.